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MLB Announces Partnership With Roku For Sunday Broadcasts

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MLB announced that it has officially reached a deal with Roku to broadcast Sunday games. The first game of the new multi-year deal will be this Sunday May 19.

The league previously had a deal with Peacock to broadcast early Sunday games. It was reported back in April that the Peacock partnership was likely ending. Peacock evidently was willing to continue the arrangement at a lower price point than the $30MM they had been paying annually. Later reporting indicated they wanted to renegotiate the deal to around $10MM. However, MLB was close to lining up another pact with a different platform. Shortly thereafter, further reporting indicated that Roku was likely to be the new platform.

Now that the Roku deal is official, the details show it will be slightly different than the Peacock arrangement. Previously, the “Sunday Leadoff” games on Peacock all started shortly after 11:30am or just after noon Eastern, with the other games starting at least 90 minutes later to give Peacock a window of exclusivity. That will be the case with some of the contests on Roku this year, but not all. Here is the full slate, with all times ET:

  • May 19, Red Sox @ Cardinals, 1:05pm
  • May 26, Blue Jays @ Tigers, 11:35am
  • June 2, Twins @ Astros, 1:05pm
  • June 9, Giants @ Rangers, 1:05pm
  • June 16, Cardinals @ Cubs, 1:05pm
  • June 23, Diamondbacks @ Phillies, 11:35am
  • June 30, Pirates @ Braves, 11:35am
  • July 7, Diamondbacks @ Padres, 4:10pm
  • July 14, Yankees @ Orioles, 11:35am
  • July 21, Brewers @ Twins, 1:05pm
  • July 28, Reds @ Rays, 11:35am
  • August 4, Giants @ Reds, 12:05pm
  • August 11, Angels @ Nationals, 11:35am
  • August 18, Marlins @ Mets, 12:05pm
  • August 25, Nationals @ Braves, 12:05pm
  • September 1, Dodgers @ Diamondbacks, 4:10pm
  • September 8, Rays @ Orioles, 12:05pm
  • September 15, Reds @ Twins, 1:05pm

Another change from the Peacock arrangement is that the games will be free, with no subscription required. There are no blackouts for Roku or MLB.TV users. The full details of how to access the games are provided by Brian Murphy of MLB.com.

Since there’s less of a focus on exclusivity and the accessibility is greater than under the Peacock, it seems that Roku and MLB are more focused on building the brand and fan interest, a sentiment that is present in statement from both parties.

“As television programming, live sports, and the leagues have fragmented across networks, apps, and multiple packages, Roku—home to all of them—plays an increasingly crucial role for viewers and advertisers,”…

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